2015 Sub

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Re: 2015 Sub

Postby PrfktTear » Thu Aug 28, 2014 5:22 pm

A friend of mine was just patting himself on the back for picking up the extended edition trilogy on blu-ray for like $40 from amazon --- and while that's a great deal, and if you're a big enough fan totally worth it, but I held off. I know at some point there's going to be that 20 disc set with all six extended films plus extras up the wazoo. Thats when I'll bite. Of course by then blu-ray will probably be obsolete.
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Re: 2015 Sub

Postby Beedo Sookcool » Fri Aug 29, 2014 1:22 am

Too right, Tear! Bill Cable, webmaster of the Creature Cantina site I write beer reviews (and a couple other things) for, keeps joshing me about never getting a Blu-Ray player. Well, I remember when DVDs were the absolute ultimate in entertainment, untoppable and here to stay. I'm just biding my time, now . . . . };D
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Re: 2015 Sub

Postby dayraven » Fri Aug 29, 2014 4:57 pm

michael moorcock is another english author, wrote a bunch of books about this chap named elric of melnibone, also was editor for a few years of new worlds magazine. he is also noted as criticizing mr tolkein for what he called writing a "merry england" setting that romanticized a fictional pastoral way of life enjoyed by the english peasantry of the late middle ages.

so, no tolkein, no moorcock... what kind of geek are you? [smile] are you a frank herbert geek? r.a. salvatore? lord dunsany? robert howard? c.s. lewis? edgar rice burroughs?
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Re: 2015 Sub

Postby Tekwych » Fri Aug 29, 2014 9:19 pm

dayraven wrote:what kind of geek are you? [smile] are you a frank herbert geek? r.a. salvatore? lord dunsany? robert howard? c.s. lewis? edgar rice burroughs?


Authors now available in digital ePub format that I have purchased at least three books in the last 6 months:
Isaac Asimov
Frank Herbert
Stephen R. Donaldson
Katherine Kurtz
Terry Brooks
Piers Anthony
Poul Anderson
Larry Niven
Anne McCaffrey

Should this have its own thread? Cause Very Food Topic!
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Re: 2015 Sub

Postby Beedo Sookcool » Sat Aug 30, 2014 4:46 am

Well, I'm a huge fan of Terry Pratchett and Grant Naylor (and Rob Grant on his own). I adore Karen Traviss' Star Wars: Commando novels, Alan Moore's LoEG stuff, and Harry Potter, of course. Also a big fan of Robert J. Sawyer, the Canadian dude who wrote the novel upon which the TV series Flash Forward was based (amongst many others); he's a great storyteller and a super-nice guy. Aaaaaand David Brin (Uplift Saga), Spider Robinson (Callahan Chronicles), 'n' Douglas Adams (because Douglas Freakin' Adams).

Other than that, I'm fairly eclectic, not really focusing on any given author. I don't think I've read any of those other authors you guys mentioned (apart from C.S. Lewis, which kind of petered out in book 4 of Narnia), but at the moment I'm going through Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's The Lost World again.

Does an entire new genre count for geekism? 'Cause Carl Hiaasen invented the Trashy South Floridian Crime Comedy genre, and I have all of his books (and his one factual one about Disney corruption).
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Re: 2015 Sub

Postby dayraven » Sat Aug 30, 2014 5:43 pm

ah, all right, i get where you're coming from. terry pratchett is one i like, but for reason, when i get thinking of geek-themed writers, i always forget to list him... color me dumb. SACD is another of my faves, and i admit a weakness for jules vern as well. doug adams is a given... but 's cool, i have a better idea of where you're coming from...

which then begs the question, how did you end up in motu? there's not a lot of sword and sorcery in your reading list, which might indicate why you'd be drawn to motu... and what's more, your fanfic indicates a flair for the writing style. wha-huh???

for me personally, i feel like the techno-magic stuff in motu could use some recalibration. the one thing i didn't care for in the MYP cartoon was making the tech too easily accessed. there was a whole industrial factory in eternos, and for me, i like my motu more from mini comics, where the tech was there but it was all secret and rare, and the magic was there, but in the hands of a few choice folk in the larger narrative world. i preferred that, that the tech should be esoteric just like the magic. it's a big part of why i'm so stoked for oolar.
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Re: 2015 Sub

Postby Beedo Sookcool » Sat Aug 30, 2014 9:51 pm

I got into MOTU when I received a Man-E-Faces for my eighth birthday. The 1980s was then an Eternian blur of action figures, mini-comics, and Filmation cartoons, ending with me owning all but 7 of the MOTU toys released in the USA (Eternia, Blasterhawk, and 5 of the Meteorbs), as well as a She-Ra, a Catra, a NA He-Man, an Optikk, and a Slushhead. After my childhood pal's house burned down in the early 1990s (thanks to a short in the sump-pump; the whole family got out safely), and were preparing to move back to England in the late 1990s, I ended up giving him my entire Vintage MOTU collection. Then 2002 happened, and crappy distribution left me a "Battle Fist" short of what I would've considered a complete Millennial collection (no ridiculous He-Man & Skeletor variants, just a couple cool ones and the rest of the cast). Then MOTUC came along, and I've sold most of my Millennial stuff (except the Slime Pit set, Dragon Walker, Battle Bones, Spitbull, and a couple of the figures) to Evil Robot Studios, which makes toy-based avant-garde nerd furniture for rich hipsters.

Anywho, I have read sword-and-sorcery stuff (just none of the authors so far mentioned), watched similar films, played RPGs and video games in the genre, and thoroughly enjoyed them all. I'm not super-immersed in it, but it's great fun, nonetheless.

And I'm with you on the tech and powerful sorcery being rarer. Kinda loses its impact, otherwise. Ideally, I'd like it somewhere between the Mini-Comics and Filmation, with a dash of Thundarr: a lot of tech Jawa-rigged from Pre-Great-War stuff, but advances are being made to be able to bring it up to craftsman-made original stuff (usually Duncan). Sorcerers kept the books, that's why they're powerful and prominent, and they want more power, butthey're killing each other off to raid each other's libraries (Batros would approve), so they're dwindling in numbers, and the few remaining ones are getting very, very good at magic. Local petty warlords keep fighting amongst each other for resources. And amongst all this, you've got a war-torn royal family who just wants everyone to be NICE to each other, is that so damn hard?!! And more and more tribes and royal houses across the "civilised" world starting to like that idea and side with this Randor guy, he seems a nice fellow, shame about all his family went through, but he's still fairly optimistic, despite it all. And just as things start to seem promising for the future, Randor's really, really, really bitter older brother comes back with the mother of all chips on his shoulder and a group of his own, made up of outcasts and the disenfranchised with their own ideas on how the world should be.

Y'know. That sort of thing. };D
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Re: 2015 Sub

Postby dayraven » Sun Aug 31, 2014 6:05 pm

exactly! you get it, i am stunned by the number of people who don't.

if one of the other is everywhere, they lose their narrative power. like for example, he's man's power sword... he had, in the beginning, one half of the sword, the other belonged to skeletor, so immediately, there's narrative tension, one party or the other is halfway to completing the sword which in turn grants them access to the castle and all her might and secrets...

which means having the good guy associate w/ the sorceress very much kills the tension on his side. he will never seek to complete the power sword, because she let's him in whenever he wishes. the power is apparently already his too... so he has nothing to gain. it's hard to imagine the concept of a hero with no temptation to lure him into evil. this is an issue with the jesus myth i have too, if he were a celestial being taken flesh, he has zero stake in the salvation of man... he can't be tempted, which the devil should have known, but apparently didn't, he is above all human weakness and frailty, and he knows beyond any shadow of doubt what the truth is, while the rest of us toil under the yoke of faith. jesus had no faith to test, and neither does he-man... he's already won the kingdom. that's a huge problem from a storytelling POV because without testing one's virtues, they aren't virtues at all, this is one of the most basic tenets of the Hero's Journey

but back to the point, then they cloned the sword again for she-ra, and then we add another sword for faker(?) which appears to be fake, but then, how would it survive combat against the real thing? if i made a replica excalibur, and decided to take up arms against arthur with it, you'd expect my faux sword would shatter against the true magical relic... oh well. and then, we've got legacy stones, ram stones, serpent stones, diamond rays of disappearance... it cheapens each artifact to some measure every time they deus up another one.

unless you have good storytelling, which is where motu has always had potential, but fell short... for example, preternia could have been a great setting for a golden age that kind of accidentally set off an arms race for the magic and tech. they began to abuse it, which led to the destruction of the big civilizations of eternia, and eventually alarmed the cosmic enforcers, who hid the really powerful stuff that they couldn't easily destroy, but perhaps, by the time they arrived, a huge load was already lost. so there are artifacts and tech all over the place, the artifacts only really useful to mages, and the tech only useful to savants. and of course, as time passes, the stuff falls apart and rots, the ability to create or repair things becomes more and more esoteric... you know, like a true dark age. eventually, in modern times, a barbarian who seems incorruptible comes along, and they need someone who can challenge this arch-mage skeletor, so sharella, one of the few remaining mages, hooks him up w/ the gear and gives him a mission... take that guy's power sword before he unleashes total devastation upon us. so off he goes, and in the beginning, it's easy to just play goalie... but once he sees what skeletor can do, he wants a taste. man at arms is one of the last savants, and hooks he-man up w/ some tech, and now, you've got a new arms race going on, and we're testing the hero's incorruptibility. the really old, really powerful eternian beings kind of circle their own wagons and prepare for the worse, so skytree and granamyr both empower servitors to protect them... and maybe gather a few chotchkis that they don't already have, you know, just to keep them out of the hands of the really bad people who would do bad things with them.

along comes hordak, who has been training skeletor, up to a point, but loses control of him once skellie gets the power sword, because why not, he's halfway to ultimate power, why stop now? hordak has the resources of an empire behind him, he doesn't need to be the most powerful tech-guy nor the most powerful mage to be really friggin scary. he's got sheer numbers... but maybe we allow him to be the top evil force w/ the tech, he can animate fallen foes as new troopers, he can arm them with weapons no one has ever seen before... so all that's left is to beat him back with magic and muscle. this is the reason that the new comic bugs me, because hordak is so preposterously powerful with tech AND magic that one wonders A) why anyone fights him, as he can casually destroy the source of the good guys' magic and overwhelm their tech and B) if hordak's apparently already won the "coolest guy in the universe" medal, so what's left to concur? what allure does eternia hold for him if he's already more powerful than any force they have there?

anyway, personally, i like the idea of he-man as "the most powerful man in the universe" meaning physical might, and not as a techno-mage-ninja or whatever else... the sword should stay as it was, a key into castle grayskull, wherein lies a power that neither he-man nor skeletor have. this way, there's some temptation there for he-man to prove his virtue against... because he could take skeletor's sword and claim a greater prize than what he already has, but he chooses not to. you could even leave the sorceress inside, just take her away from he-man as the morgan freeman narrator of the story. make her instead the guardian of the castle, afraid of either side who might try to take the power and wary of both equally, and maybe, imply that she'd be a slave of sorts to whomever captures the castle. you know, cuz i'm a dirty old man. :eek:

each side is trying to find the right combination of tech and magic that will give them the upper hand, and eventually unleash the power of grayskull...

snake mountain is actually likewise insanely powerful, but hordak doesn't know snake magic, so he never told skeletor what he was actually living in because turning him onto that would have cost him skeletor's loyalty, and perhaps the might of the mountain as well. so skeletor is sitting on a huge potent cairn that he can't command, but here comes king hsss thanks to kobra khan, who has firsthand knowledge of that golden age's lost potency, and the ability to command the mountain, and now we have a real problem on eternia that warrants hordak's personal attention. i like the mini-comic idea of the snake men once having a large multi-planetary empire also, and so, they are a direct threat to horde hegemony. this is crucial for providing motivation.

also, my whole point of the faker-themed fanfic was to provide one more emergent power, and to make use of a usually discarded character who could offer some interesting angles for new stories. i like the idea of him as a gar racial hero, trying to be good, but being punished at every turn for being a decent guy. i don't like the idea of there being too many access points into castle grayskull, or muddying the waters of what function the power sword is supposed to serve, BUT if we must, let's at least get some smart mileage from it... allowing faker access to the same personal power he-man has, the same resources but with an altered perspective, that seems like a good way to expand the mythos. so i picture faker as possessing the same might as he-man, but different values, and a "third half" of the power sword, which can combine with any other "half" to unlock the castle. i also think she-ra's sword is totally unrelated, another magical artifact sure, but it's not "the power sword" and it doesn't grant her access to the castle.

i also have this crazy idea that eternian magic is highly corrosive for the user... look at the mythos, most of the powerful magic users are power mad lunatics, and then we have a couple "good" magic users, who are recluses and filled with arcane knowledge that they only deploy in strategic ways to avoid letting the heroes make informed choices that might end the conflict... in other words, they're kind loopy too. this is what i find intriguing about the eldor character, what if he were the first guy to combine tech and magic to create the book of living spells, that was essentially like a magic ipad... he could store the magic spells and knowledge there, and avoid the corrupting effects of the spells, whlist still having access to them... and for that, he was chastized and maybe imprisoned by the cosmic enforcers for unbalancing the equation, and perhaps it is that very book that currently lies in grayskull castle that is the point of why everyone wants in the castle like TMZ snagging an upskirt of lindsay lohan. that artifact contains a wealth of magical knowledge from the golden age when both magic and tech were at the very height of their sophistication, and it's harmless to the user... NOW you have a reason to fly halfway across the galaxy and gate crash, now you have a reason why at the cost of everything you have, you must stop the other guys from getting their hands on that might first.

and it doesn't hurt that that gives you enough material for a slew of novels, movies, games, toys, etc... that you could mine for decades worth of merchandizing. there's no reason at all why motu couldn't make a fine tabletop RPG, a couple genres of video games, movies, comics, tv series, novelizations, wearables, etc...
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Re: 2015 Sub

Postby Beedo Sookcool » Sun Aug 31, 2014 6:37 pm

Got some very intriguing ideas there, DR. I've seen the "power physically corrupts" angle several times before; it seems a common part of S&S lore, and even worked its way into sci-fi.

As for the Power Sword, my thinking was: Yes, it's split in two, and it needs reuniting. At some point, out hero, Oo-lar, the He-Man, must reunite the two halves . . . and then give it up into hiding, so the true Heirs of Grayskull can claim it when the time comes. Could he give up that power that easily? Even with the best of intentions for keeping it -- he has to keep fighting evil until it's no longer a threat -- could he give up that power that easily? And what would happen if he refused?

I always figured, like you said, that the mystical artefacts like the Wheel of Infinity and Diamond Ray of Disappearance, etc, were all created in the arms race leading up to the Great War, and were scattered and hidden by any survivors for the sake of the planet. And there are (or were) loads of them to choose from, because arms races aren't tidy and logical and restrained.

See, this is where the tech comes in for me. I reckon Duncan reverse-engineered the Battle Ram and Wind Raider from stuff he found at dig-sites (which would make Melaktha and Smallen more important characters), but there are other items out there, Point Dread and the Talon Fighter, for example, that are beyond even his genius, and that makes it imperative for the good guys to claim as many as possible. Perhaps Duncan cobbled together an Attak Trak from pieces of several different Traks found scattered about, which is why it's so quirky.

As for Skeletor, he's got more scope for pulling in techies and experts to make him nasty things like Land Sharks and so forth.

And as for your idea about the Book of Living Spells: boffo. Socko. Love it.
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Re: 2015 Sub

Postby dayraven » Mon Sep 01, 2014 11:13 am

I reckon Duncan reverse-engineered the Battle Ram and Wind Raider from stuff he found at dig-sites (which would make Melaktha and Smallen more important characters), but there are other items out there, Point Dread and the Talon Fighter, for example, that are beyond even his genius, and that makes it imperative for the good guys to claim as many as possible. Perhaps Duncan cobbled together an Attak Trak from pieces of several different Traks found scattered about, which is why it's so quirky.


this... i like this. i hadn't thought about tech advanced enough that he might not be the guy to fix it... so not only is there a race to get the stuff, but there must be some tomes or some lost savant who lives on that might have a fuller breadth of knowledge on how to use some of that stuff... or maybe it's truly lost, and it's a depressing red herring: that the glories of the past are forever gone or doomed to obsolescence. it's funny though, like you mentioned duncan cobbling together the attack trak from slavaged wrecks... what if he got it wrong? like the older skeletons of dinosaurs, before anyone knew how the disparate bones really fit together, so you up w/ parts from different vehicles kind of rednecked together with twine and duct tape and sent off to battle. that'd be funny.

i also like that you touched on something i've thought too, oolar, the barbarian hero sharella chose to gift with the power of grayskull, should not be the same as the genetic or spiritual heirs to grayskull. adam is fine in that role, and maybe part of his ascendance is finding the true power sword that oolar hid... maybe he's even have to take it from him. but that adam inherits the sword of grayskull, and get's his power that's contained within the blade, but that is not the same as the power in the castle nor would it grant access to the items within the castle. that lies only with the power sword. so even with the halves united, there's still something at stake to fight over...

and as we've said before, i think it's important to get a narrative bible together that rates the guys on some kind of criteria that gives new writers an idea of how to create stories. i think he-man should have a definite upwards range of his might, and maybe it's not the same for every he-man... the stories generational, maybe different he-man got different powers? maybe oolar was physically stronger than wundar, but wundar was a better warrior? maybe the thunder punch could knock the top off a mountain, but against the flexible snake men skeletons, it was useless, hence the snake armor upgrade? what if there's a library of he-man upgrade powers, like the lazer light or thunder punch, held within the castle that documents the upgrades that each he-man needed to carry out their mission, and what if, if you knew what power to call on, any he-man could have called on any of those powers at a moment of crisis? and as we've discussed, i think it makes total sense that tri-klops is a better swordsman than he-man is (especially if we're talking the idea of him as a temporary state for the young price adam... the prince should have a lot to learn about how to use the power at his disposal) but if blade and tri-klops fought, who wins that contest? can beastman command mer-man? is evil lyn more powerful a mage than count marzo, and could either withstand the sorceress if they were ever to penetrate the castle? i'd like to think the guardian of the castle has a LOT more up her sleeve than "oh phooey, they opened the door, guess the castle's all theirs now." i would hope that skeletor would, if he could open the castle, encourage every one of his henchmen to enter the castle first, cuz the first dozen folks inside are going to get their skull's blasted open, and that's only her personal defense... this is where i think castle grayskullman makes such a great addition to the line, he's a final line of defense for the sorceress/castle should she get penetrated. in a larger sense, it pays off to know how much of a threat, and what kind of threat, the various villains present, especially if you intend new writers to come on in the future and have any sense of continuity. it doesn't cap creativity, it gives us a sense of narrative flow... like what if mer-man seemingly retires from the game, tired of getting beat up and tossed aside... and he returns home to find clawful's people have destroyed his home and he's a king with no throne... now, he has a new motivation, to kill clawful. lots of stories develop. maybe he creates a new hybrid race, maybe he finds the wheel of time and tries to go back and fix things, maybe he unleashes some vast aquatic menace, etc... maybe he delves into some arcane research and learns a new kind of magic? just because he starts as a D lister (or whatever) doesn't mean he has to stay there, it just means an author, when they get to write a story of their favorite guy, gets to show us why this guy's underrated, or how this character grows and transforms over time.
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